Introduction: Bee Creative! ~ Bedside Bear Clock and Lamp

About: Hello everyone! My name is Nathan, and I love making things, inventing things, and just having fun!

Are you ready to BEE creative!?!?

Thank you for visiting! This instructable is truly an opportunity for you to get creative, get messy, and have a fun time doing so! The project was designed to be a bedside nightlight, clock, and pencil cup for my little sister, Rachel, who is presently remodeling her room. Although its yet ungifted, I have some trial run pics shown above. I’m sure she’ll love it! The project was made almost completely of random objects lying around the house. Recycling is always the way to go!

In this instructable I’ll share with you the tips and tricks I used to design and model. However, don’t let my instructions limit your own ingenuity! I’d love to see any additional special touches you have to offer.

Most importantly be safe and have fun!!

…if I throw in some bad puns along the way, please BEAR with me! ;)

Step 1: Everything You'll Need!

First things first..

Let's gather the supplies! I compiled this short list of tools and materials I used. Note that alterations can be made if one doesn't have all the supplies; comment if you'd like my input.


-Elmer's School Glue
-Wood Glue
-Hot Melt Glue Gun
-Elmer's Nano Glue

(Nano glue is a little more unique, most super strong glue alternates work!)

- Drill
- Coping Saw
- Paintbrush
- Sand Paper
- Clamps
- Chisel
- Soldering Iron


- 1/2 inch board (Roughly square foot)
- Paints (Acrylic)
Yellow, Black, White, Brown...
- 2 Plastic Eggs
- 1 Balloon
- 1 Cork
- Red Bead
- Paperclip
- Bottle cap
- 10 Popsicle Sticks
- Old Clock (Plastic)
- Newspaper
- Modeling Clay
- 2k Resistor
- 9V Battery and Connector

Step 2: Refurbishing the Clock

One man's trash is another man's treasure!

The original inspiration for this project came from this little clock. Since it was unused and taking up space, I was told that it was time to get rid of it. I started ticking through ideas in my brain (punny?) and soon I found myself drawing up ideas for the bear clock.

Every clock is different, adjustments should be made. However, every procedure should look similar. First, I identified the basic mechanism structure and how its motors and battery were packaged and mounted. Keeping these intact as much as possible, I removed the excess frame so I was left with the clock face and motor. Later these will be inserted and fit to the bear den!

Step 3: The Bears Den ~ Creating the Structure

Home is Where the Heart is... and the stash of HONEY!

Don't worry about pretty at this point! Making a sturdy backbone will be important and helpful later in the project.

Using a milk jug, scissors, and a lot of hot glue, I started forming the basic structure of the bear den. Plastic was easiest to find, but as later added, I would suggest a wood support beam along the bottom for stability. Once the paper mache and clock is added, it'll come to shape. Also be sure to add in little features (extra bumps and ripples) to give the later illusion of cracks and rocks.

Step 4: The Bears Den ~ Mounting the Clock

Its time to put the clock and base structure together!

To do this, I used a small board as a mount. Plan on making the board so that it can secure to the clock as well as the base board. This gives a sturdy set up. The nano glue should be used with caution. From my experience its amazingly strong, but can get extremely messy. It tends to bubble up and expand as it dries. Clamping is necessary!

Step 5: The Bear's Den ~ Paper Mache Away

Get out the newspaper and those elementary school skills, it's time to paper mache!

I love paper mache. It's easy, fun, and effective. For the bear den one can have pretty long strips since there's not a whole lot of fine detail. I mixed the school glue with a little water so it was runny enough to easily spread and mold. I'd suggest putting a teaspoon of Elmer's glue in a bowl and adding water until you have tomato soup consistency. Yes, it has got to be the tomato variety of soup (, not really).

Get a good coating on. It's probably a good idea to put a couple layers of paper mache so the den is strong as stone... or at least somewhat childproof.

Step 6: Making the Bear ~ Art of Bear Forming

Art of Bear Forming
(Someday all of your bear clocks will be held in museums around the globe, mark my words!)

When forming the bear, one first must get a good idea as to what the bear should look like. I thought this teddy bear sort of design would look nice and be simplistic to make. To get the basic shape of the bear I found that a couple large plastic eggs worked egg-stremely well! Giving slightly more detail, such as a snout and feet, was effectively done with corks! I used hot melt glue to secure these pieces. Placing a tight balloon over the top of both gave a good surface for the paper mache to come, cut off the remaining balloon snout!

Step 7: Making the Bear ~ PaPeR MAcHe!

Round two for the glue and paper!

When paper macheing the bear, I would advise to use very small newspaper squares. Since the bear is a more shapely and round surface it can be more difficult to wrap with paper mache. Don't worry too much though, there will be opportunities to perfect the shape once the glue dries!

After the glue had dried, I decided to put on a coat of white tempera paint. This wouldn't be necessary, but did give an easy consistent layer to work with.

To make the ears and nose, I cut out small pieces of funky foam and glued them on with hot melt glue. I was concerned about them holding paint initially, but never fear, it worked great!

Step 8: Making the Bear ~ Finishing Touches

Now its time to make some fine tuning adjustments and start painting!

First I decided to put down some brown tempera paint. This is not necessary! Once one puts down the acrylics you won't notice either way. I thought that it'd be nice to give some more detailed shaping around the ears and eyes. Using modeling clay. I don't think that this was totally necessary. It looked great before, but I thought this gave a little boost.

For the arms, I used modeling clay. I'm also sure that thick funky foam would give a similar look. When using clay, let the arms dry separate from the bear and then glue them on with hot melt glue. This will insure a solid connection.

Time to paint! Get creative! Make a panda, black bear, grizzly bear, polar bear, whatever sort of bear you'd
like! To make the inside of the ears I used the back of my paintbrush as pictured. Patience is key with painting.
remember that you can do multiple coats in places if you want to make changes. I painted the body of the bear
slightly lighter than the arms to give a slight differential in color. Have fun!

Step 9: Because Evvvery Beehive Glows!

Who doesn't want a glowing beehive nightlight?!

Get out the Elmer's glue and yellow yarn! When thinking up the idea for the beehive light I wasn't sure if it would work... now, I totally recommend adding it! This actually is just perfect for a nightlight and a fun addition.

First, I took the clear top of a plastic bottle, this will be the "bulb" of the nightlight. I then painted the cap yellow so that the light shining out from its surface would give a "beehive" like glow (that is if a beehive were to glow). Using yellow yarn I then spread a layer of Elmer's glue over the string. The sticky string stuck to the surface of the cap well and after a couple hours was fully dried. I would suggest using two separate strands of yarn to wrap the the round sides and cover the flat top. Next I'll review the electronics to get this beehive a-glowin'!

Step 10: Beehive Electronics

Illuminating the beehive!

These couple steps take a bit of thought, since the electronics are intended to be inside the other objects. First, get the electronics needed. This includes an LED light, one 2kΩ resistor, a light switch, 9V battery, and a battery connector.

First, clip one of the connectors to the LED. This will give room to solder the 2kΩ resistor. Place both of these leads through the holes in the table plate made of Popsicle sticks glued together. Then solder two long wires to the backs of these connectors. I'd advise to put some electrical tape down to avoid a short circuit. Run the long wires back under the bear cave to the battery case.

For the battery case I covered a small box (for toothpaste) with Popsicle sticks. This matched the overall design well. See the pictures above to note how I entered the wires from the back and had one of the wires slip out the slide. This slip out the side will be for a small switch attachment. Simply cut this wire and solder the switch leads into place.

I chose to place a bottle cap on the switch; thought it gave a nice feel. I just cut the cap in half and then used a hole punch to make room for the switch. Waa-laa the beehive glows!

Step 11: Pencil Cup Barrel (..or Should I Say BEAR-el..)

A pencil cup, or container for just about anything, can be a useful addition.

To make this cup, find a can that can be used for a sizing reference. I used a small pop-can to get the size right. First I wrapped a piece of card-stock paper around a couple times and glued it in place. Don't worry if its a bit flimsy at this point, the Popsicle sticks will strengthen it significantly.

Next cut the ends off several Popsicle sticks. Using hot glue, secure them vertically around the perimeter of the paper. Once these are secured, remove the can and the cylinder should be sturdy. To give bit of style to the barrel take some black string and glue on bands. Fun and useful!

Step 12: The Fishing Pole

The fishing pole was a fun and easy build.

Simply take a stick from any tree, this example is birch wood. I would suggest letting the stick dry out for several days if its removed directly from the tree. After whittling off the bark, drill a small hole in the top. Next take some fine string (dental floss would also work) and thread it through the pole.

Finally add the bobber and hook To make the hook I simply took a regular sized paper clip, cut it in two and used a needle nosed pliers to bend and shape. For the bobber any red bead would look great! I found a large bulb shaped bead.

Step 13: A BEAR-y Important Book

Question: What is the first entry in "The Bear Necessities" book?
Answer: Each bear must have a miniature copy of "The Bear Necessities" of course!!

This is a cute and easy to make addition to the project. All I needed was an old gift card, tiny bit of popsicle stick, hot glue, and paint! First cut out three rectangles. There should be two evenly sized large rectangles and another thats slightly smaller as shown. By gluing these together it gives the illusion of two covers and inside pages. Glue the binding on one side and paint away! I used a marker to do the tiny lettering. Make several if you'd like, these are so fun!

Other Bear Bookstore Bestsellers

  1. Goldilocks and the Three Bears
  2. Little Bear
  3. Bee Identification Guide
  • Do you have any other ideas??

Step 14: Making the Base

A sturdy base makes a big difference!

For the base I found a perfect old board that just needed a little attention. Cut out a paper template of the design you desire, and map it out on the board. I chose to cut with a slight angle with the coping saw. After the base is cut out get out the sand paper and sand until smooth. This produced a really nice looking and easy to make base for the project!

Step 15: Glueing Down the Pieces

Bring the Symphony Together Folks!

Now that all the pieces have been made its time to glue them all down to the base board! To do this I used the Nano glue. As mentioned earlier any tough glue (ex. wood glue) would work for this step however. First, play with the layout, you won't want to change it after the glue is down. Place the glue on the object (such as the bear, cave, or barrel) and then push the object onto the board. It is really important to clamp down the objects, especially if you use Nano glue. Although it might look like they're staying in place, its better to be safe!

Patience is key; wait until the glue is all dry!

Slight touch ups to paint can then be completed.

Step 16: Inspirational Words of Wisdom

At some point in life, everyone needs some words of wisdom from Christopher Robin.

That's especially true for every bear! These words are a special addition and a positive reminder. Find a quote, saying, or create your own motivator!

I actually used paint and a toothpick to slowly and carefully make each letter. This was a very time consuming job (took over an hour). However, this technique also gives a beautiful, sincere, and 3D appearance. A marker would also work.

"You are braver than you believe,
Stronger than you seem,
and smarter than you think."

- Christopher Robin -

...those words go for you viewers too!

Step 17: CONGRATULATIONS! ...and Parting Words

Congratulations, your clock is complete!

Thank you so very much for your interest and reading through this instructable. This was a special project for me personally, and I'm very happy with how it turned out.

Remember, don't feel like you have to follow these instructions completely. Let your imagination run wild! Many of the tips can be applied for any sort of wild idea you can come up with. And when you're done... Please post some pictures! If you have any other comments or questions I'd love to hear them. Thank you!

Parting words.. Don't Worry, Bee Happy!

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